These Soar in 4 initiatives for the 2020-21 will be in 15 Title I schools and 15 neighborhoods.
Ten play-based evenings hosted at The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature and/or the Manatee County Central Library, for families to build relationships over the summer with their child’s classroom teacher; to understand classroom expectations; to support learning together all summer so that the family and their PreK student is ready and prepared to start school; and bi-weekly conversations, which includes family coaching and goal setting between the parent and their child’s PreK teacher, preparing everyone for the start of this new adventure.
Due to the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic, our 10 play-based family events have been substituted with 10 drive-through events to engage families in the curriculum while extending classroom learning. These evenings support families to be their child’s first teacher and provide community resources to meet their needs to end the cycle of poverty.
Mark your calendars! Families will want to meet their favorite PBS characters during upcoming family-fun events hosted by Soar in 4. The public television station is bringing the stars of STEM-oriented children’s shows to 3 summer and 5 Saturday Soar in 4 events. Along with character meet-and-greet fun, families can engage in hands-on activities including art, science, technology, movement,and engineering. Each event is free and the learning engagements have been designed to support classroom learning. Visit our calendar for all dates and locations.
22 complete kits, based on the FL VPK standards, which are selectively distributed weekly by the classroom teacher based upon individual student needs. Each kit contains 3 books and daily opportunities for literacy, math and social/emotional learning through meaningful play at home.
A video series of 13 structured episodes, which anchor the family nights, provide a safe, calm learning environment for children to feel good about themselves, their neighborhood and the world around them. The videos, which support the classroom units of study, help children and their families to imagine, explore and develop skills they will need for learning. Each segment highlights a Neighborhood Hero and takes the viewer on a virtual field trip to connect the family to a local high school.
A collaborative volunteer reading pal initiative in which volunteers support language and vocabulary learning each week in PreK Exceptional Student Education classrooms through literacy and play engagements.
10 transition evenings, hosted at The Bishop Museum of Nature and Science, designed to prepare and support families entering K and to build relationships over the summer with the new classroom teacher.
Supporting classroom paraprofessionals with the opportunity to join a new cohort program to earn a bachelor degree in early childhood.
A collaborative early learning task force initiative to implement Conscious Discipline, which was named as a national model for character education by the Florida State Legislature, in all Manatee Country early learning classrooms. An annual two day professional development training is held for all early learning staff to continue on the path to actively build a more cohesive early learning community which empowers adults to consciously respond to daily conflict, transforming it into an opportunity to teach critical life skills to children.